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754 First Street
LaSalle, IL 61301
Phone: (815) 220-1848
The Illinois & Michigan Canal is a 96-mile, hand-dug waterway that forever changed the nation when it opened in 1848. The final link in America's great water highway system of the 19th century, the Illinois & Michigan Canal connects the Illinois River and Lake Michigan (which prompted its name). Thanks to the canal, people and goods could travel from New York via the Hudson River and Erie Canal to the Great Lakes and Chicago. From that midwestern hub they could travel to the Illinois River and ultimately the Mississippi River to St. Louis and New Orleans.